The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs recently held their annual awards presentation at Doltone House, where they celebrated their clubs’ achievements and resilience throughout the challenging 2022/23 season. The event was highlighted by the presentation of the prestigious Dr. George Peponis Medal, named after the esteemed UNSW alumnus and UNSW Sport Hall of Fame member. Jacob Preston, a rising star in the Bulldogs roster, claimed the top honors of the evening. 

Preston, who is also apart of Elite Athlete Program at UNSW and pursuing a Bachelor of Criminology and Criminal Justice, not only secured the Dr. George Peponis Medal but also received the Carroll & O'Dea Members Player of the Year and Steve Mortimer Rookie of the Year Awards. These accolades are a testament to his dedication, skill, and character. His impressive 95.5% tackle efficiency and consistent 80-minute performances in his debut season with the Bulldogs showcased his potential to become a dominant force in the NRL.

Preston with all 3 awards
Jake Preston Showcasing All 3 Awards

While basking in the glory of his achievements, Preston remained remarkably humble. He shared his gratitude, saying, "To be honest, I was just stoked to be training full-time with first grade this year. Every game to be playing first is unbelievable. I grew up the biggest footy nerd, and every time I run out, I just cherish it so much. To be playing NRL, it's been crazy. We didn't have the success we had hoped for, but I definitely learned a lot of lessons out of this year."

Preston's journey to this accolade was marked by dedication and hard work. He appeared in 20 games during his debut season, emerging as a standout player among the Bulldogs' forward pack. His remarkable 95.5% tackle efficiency demonstrated his consistent and powerful 80-minute performances throughout the season. Preston's talent and determination garnered praise both on and off the field, solidifying his place as a promising star in the NRL.

Receiving both the Player of the Year and Members Player of the Year awards is a testament to the unwavering effort Preston poured into the season, as well as the faith the club and community have in this talented second-rower. His exceptional performance on the field earned him recognition as a 'future leader' of the Bulldogs by General Manager of Football Phil Gould, hinting at a promising and enduring career ahead.

Jake Preston In Action
Jake Preston In Action Earlier This Year

Beyond his on-field prowess, Jacob Preston is recognized for his strong ambition, dedication, and good character, both on and off the field. As a participant in UNSW's elite athlete program, Jacob Preston's dedication to both academics and sports is commendable. Balancing the demands of professional rugby league while pursuing a degree is a testament to his work ethic and commitment to personal growth.

Preston's remarkable journey to winning the Dr. George Peponis Medal Player of the Year, Carroll & O'Dea Members Player of the Year, and Steve Mortimer Rookie of the Year Awards is a good indication of what is in store for him in the NRL. With the faith of the Bulldogs' club and community behind him, Jacob Preston is poised for a promising and enduring career, both on and off the field. UNSW Sport would like to congratulate Jacob for an incredible 2022/23 season!